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Apple Is Building an Android Automotive Rival, and Almost Everything Makes Sense
Right now, CarPlay is pretty much the only alternative to Android Auto, but when it comes to ways to conquer the automotive market, Google and Apple are seemingly using different strategies.

Apple Is Building an Android Automotive Rival, and Almost Everything Makes Sense

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Apple, for example, is indeed very committed to offering CarPlay in as many vehicles as possible, but at the same time, it’s also believed the Cupertino-based tech giant is working on its very own car that could see the daylight as soon as 2025.

The already famous Apple Car is expected to be a self-driving EV with state-of-the-art tech capabilities that would completely change the automotive sector in a way that would put the focus even more on everything digital.

In the meantime, Google is focusing on what it does best, so the search giant is investing not only in Android Auto but also in Android Automotive. As compared to Android Auto, which is powered by an Android mobile device, Android Automotive is a fully-featured operating system pre-loaded at HU level and installed right from the factory.

Google therefore isn’t building a car but is working with traditional automakers on integrating its operating system in their models, therefore offering customers even more integration with its own services, such as Google Maps and Google Assistant.

Needless to say, this is a huge win for Google, especially as Android Automotive would keep users connected to the company’s always growing ecosystem, while also getting access to tons of data, including from vehicle functions like battery range, air conditioning, and so much more.

Apple, on the other hand, couldn’t just sit and watch Google have fun on this front. So the company is believed to be working on its very own rival to Android Automotive, though this time, its intention isn’t to launch a stand-alone product like Google did but to expand the capabilities of CarPlay.

As a result, thanks to an effort internally called Project IronHeart, Apple wants CarPlay to get access to all kinds of car functions, including the climate system, seats, the speedometer, and everything else. In other words, it’s exactly what Android Automotive does right now.

At the first glance, Apple investing in a rival to Android Automotive is something that just had to happen, but on the other hand, there are several roadblocks that the iPhone maker will certainly have a hard time dealing with.

First and foremost, it’s how the whole thing is going to work. Android Automotive can access vehicle systems because it’s an OS pre-loaded with the car, so it’s deeply integrated into the main software in the first place. By sticking with CarPlay, Apple’s idea still relies on an iPhone, so the company must find a way to allow the smartphone to connect to all the in-car systems and avoid a software nightmare on the user’s end.

In theory, this could work on new cars equipped with special hardware, but at the end of the day, the whole thing could also lead to higher prices for customers.

And then, it’s how Apple convinces carmakers to offer its new system in the first place. The Cupertino-based tech giant is already seen as a potential threat to traditional automakers, as it’s investing in its own vehicle that could one day compete against their models.

This is the reason some companies, such as BMW, are believed to have refused to work with Apple on the Apple Car in the first place. These carmakers didn’t want to become a contract manufacturer for Apple and to eventually build a vehicle that would compete against their own models, therefore hurting their businesses.

Without a doubt, Apple’s Android Automotive rival is an ambitious project that has a lot of potential to be something big not only for the company but for users too. But at the end of the day, it could all be just a system that Apple would end up using on the Apple Car alone.


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